Home Office written question – answered on 15th October 2018
Philip Davies Conservative, Shipley
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many recorded crimes relating to forced marriage there have been since 16 June 2014.
Victoria Atkins The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Home Department, Minister for Women
The UK is a world-leader in the fight to stamp out the brutal practice of forced marriage, with our joint Home Office and Foreign and Commonwealth Office Forced Marriage Unit (FMU) leading efforts to combat it both at home and abroad.
We made forced marriage a criminal offence in 2014 to better protect victims and send a clear message that this abhorrent practice is totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated in the UK. To date, there have been four convictions under the offence.
The most recent Crown Prosecution Service Violence Against Women and Girls report shows that the volume of forced marriage referrals from the police to the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) fell from 90 in 2015–16 to 56 in 2016–17, with a corresponding fall in the volume of defendants charged from 57 to 36. The volume of prosecutions completed fell from 53 in 2015–16 to 44 in 2016–17. The volume of convictions stayed steady at 32, as in 2015–16. The conviction rate increased from 60.4% in 2015–16 to 72.7% in 2016–17.